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Submitted: 03-28-2006 by jtmartin57
I bought my Manitou the day after Thanksgiving in 2003. This was my first kayak, however I had paddled many other kayaks over the years before purchasing one of my own. To this day I am still amazed by the performance of this boat. I also own a QCC 700XL in the carbon/kevlar lay-up that I primarily use for racing, but I won't think twice about using the Necky on the tight and winding blackwater rivers and swamps located here in South Carolina. I have won the Winyah Rivers Challenge in Georgetown, SC and the Island Giant kayak race on the Isle of Palms(SC) in this little boat... Recreational class of course! I plan on racing it in a couple of weeks on the Canoochee River in GA and in preparation for that race I've been paddling it on the Edisto River here in S.C. Last weekend I paddled 8.7 miles using a borrowed Werner Shuna at a GPS confirmed average of 6.6 mph. The streamflow on that day was running around 1300 cfs (this is an estimate as the nearest gaging station is ~23 miles downstream). This little boat will absolutely fly! I also use it for the more lazy efforts and have shot many wonderful photos (at least that's what my friends call 'em!)from the cockpit of this boat. I've paddled this boat on overnight trips on the Lumber River(NC) and on Lake Jocassee(SC), however I'm sure the new Manitou 14 is more adept at hauling gear for the longer excursions. To this day I am absolutely, 100% satisfied w/ my purchase and would highly recommend this boat as a first boat or a competent river runner. Why only a 9? I never really cared for the ratcheting seat adjustment or the seat for that matter.... but that's nothing a little outfitting won't fix! Buy the Manitou, paddle it, and be amazed by it's performance!